How to recognize a good breeder
We believe that good breeders are completely transparent. They will tell you all about the good, the bad and the ugly. They offer visits with their adult dogs as well as their puppies and communicate often with their buyers. Good breeders also offer a guarantee on the health of their puppies. We offer a years coverage for congenital defects, and livelong training support and connection when you and your ween are in need. We are here for life, and I would want other breeders to be as well.
When you meet the parents, pay attention to their personalities. Yes, you will be lovestruck with the pups, but as they say... if it's in the milk then it's in the kittens. The meeps will grow up to be a lot like their parents. So, ask about the parents, what are their temperaments like, quirks, issues, the good and the bad. You want to be sure you know what you're getting. Yes, you can influence your meep as it's owner and trainer, but don't expect to change their personality. Love them for who they are, and you can get a sample of what that will be from their parents.
Finally, we would say that kennel club registration doesn't always beget quality. There are many registered breeders whose dogs live in barns or kennels for life or don't conform well to the breed standards, and there are many unregistered ones who have all of their dogs inside and are treated like kings and queens, live long healthy lives, and look like best-in-show dogs. So don't hyper focus on whether they are papered or not. If you feel at ease when you visit and communicate with them, if you love what you're seeing in how the dogs live day to day, then I would feel good about buying a pup from them. There is no perfect system, but if your gut says yes, then go with it.
If you find a breeding operation that seems dangerous or unhealthy to the animals, do not adopt from them even though you will want to save all of the animals in their care. Report them to your local SPCA.